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The Las Vegas concert in the news

Posted: Fri Nov 06, 2009 6:16 pm
by sturgess66
So nice to see these good articles in appreciation of Leonard Cohen -

From LasVegasReview-Journal
SOUNDS: Leonard Cohen

From the Heart: Leonard Cohen Back Onstage Performing His Emotionally Charged Songs

By Jason Bracelin

[November 12, 2009]
8 p.m. Thursday
Colosseum at Caesars Palace, 3570 Las Vegas Blvd. South
$29.50-$275 (731-7333)
LC-LasVegasDavidStroudImage.jpg (8.88 KiB) Viewed 5919 times
Illustration by David Stroud.

There ain't no cure for love, he once noted, though his words do come close to serving as some sort of panacea.

In his songs, Leonard Cohen's heart is a gypsy, forever wandering this lonely plain or that.

He's a romantic fatalist, and few artists have ever made love sound so wondrous and devastating from one breath to the next.

Make no mistake, though, Cohen is a true believer.

"Love's the only engine of survival," he sings on "The Future," a song that doesn't see much hope in its title.

"Things are going to slide, slide in all directions," Cohen intones in a deep, world-weary voice that sounds as if he hasn't had a good night's sleep since sometime around 1963. "Won't be nothing, nothing you can measure anymore. The blizzard, the blizzard of the world has crossed the threshold and it has overturned the order of the soul."

Yes, Cohen's catalog has its share of dark corners.

The man has crafted some of the most exquisitely beautiful and emotionally raw breakup songs ever, tunes that haunt you like the sight of a lost lover in someone else's arms.

Listen to "Chelsea Hotel No. 2," which is about Cohen's brief affair with Janis Joplin, and it's like getting railroad spikes pounded into your heart.

The tune is barely two minutes long, slight and spare, with Cohen's voice flickering over tendrils of muted guitar.

"I don't mean to suggest that I loved you the best, I can't keep track of each fallen robin," he sings at the song's conclusion, after recounting a few moments of intense passion. "I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel. That's all, I don't even think of you that often."

And then it's over before you can even catch your breath.

Cohen's repertoire is filled with abrupt endings, from the painful infidelity of "Famous Blue Raincoat" to the wistful remembrances of "Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye" to the regret-filled "In My Secret Life."

Still, it would be a mistake to label him as overly dour, the cliched, wet-eyed troubadour, for even in Cohen's bleakest moments -- and there are plenty of them to go around -- there's always a dogged refusal to give up on that which stirs his passions the most.

He celebrates what torments him, and his career largely has been defined by an admirable resolve.

Now 75, Cohen came onto the scene in the late '60s as a poet and novelist turned songwriter who always infused his tunes with a pronounced literary flair. As such, his cutting, often ornate works long have been an acquired taste.

Only one of Cohen's albums has ever gone gold, and though his songs have been oft covered, he's never able to establish much more than a cult audience -- though these days, Cohen's return to the road after a prolonged absence has enabled him to pack arenas and draw his biggest crowds ever, a much deserved coda to a remarkable career.

That career has gone through several distinct stages.

Cohen's early material was mostly unadorned folk missives. By the '80s, he began larding his tunes up with too much gaudy synth, chintzy sounding electronic drums and background singers, mirroring the excesses of that era.

These days, he's a bit more in tune with his roots, having released a pair of albums this decade, 2001's "Ten New Songs" and 2004's "Songs For Heather," that sees Cohen return to slightly more austere settings, though he still collaborates heavily with singer Sharon Robinson, who offers a lively counterpoint to Cohen's bloodless rumble.

When he debuted, Cohen sang in a thin, reedy voice that since has deepened into a husky whisper, a forceful caress.

To hear it live is a rare treat.

Cohen allegedly has been forced to tour again after his former manager and lover plundered his retirement account of millions, leading him to play his first U.S. show in 15 years back in January.

It's more than a little bittersweet, then, to delight in getting a chance to see this great statesman of song onstage considering the circumstances that have brought him here.

But as with much of his career, Cohen always has been able to turn his loss into others' gain.

And so if this tour is his last bow, and it very well could be, it'll mark the final transformation of the confessions of a self-professed ugly duckling into one beautiful swan song.

"Now I bid you farewell, I don't know when I'll be back," Cohen sings on the resonant "Tower of Song." "They're moving us tomorrow to that tower down the track. But you'll be hearing from me, baby, long after I'm gone. I'll be speaking to you sweetly, from a window in the tower of song."

Contact reporter Jason Bracelin at jbracelin@ or 702-383-0476.

Re: PreConcert Las Vegas-Leonard Cohen Back Onstage ...

Posted: Fri Nov 06, 2009 7:58 pm
by MaryB
sturgess66 wrote:So nice to see these good articles in appreciation of Leonard Cohen -

From LasVegasReview-Journal

Listen to "Chelsea Hotel No. 2," and it's like getting railroad spikes pounded into your heart.

And then it's over before you can even catch your breath.

But as with much of his career, Cohen always has been able to turn his loss into others' gain.

I love these lines! Yet again, thank you very much Linda!!!!!

Re: The Las Vegas concert in the news

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 5:30 pm
by sturgess66
From LasVegasSun - (There are "links" at the link.) ... -15-years/
Leonard Cohen Back in Limelight After 15 Years

Iconic singer will play Colosseum

By Joe Brown (contact)

Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2009 | 2 a.m.
Chris Morris

Some might view this most auspicious yet unlikely occasion as a harbinger of the End Times. Forget hell freezing over, pigs flying, the mountain coming to Muhammad or other adynatons.

Leonard Cohen is playing Las Vegas.

The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, in fact: At age 75, the balladeer, poet, prophet, dark-eyed, sad-voiced ladies man is sliding right into the luxe 4,000-seat venue, between Bette Midler and Cher, next door to the Pussycat Dolls.

This is a Cultural Moment for both Cohen and Las Vegas. The perfect ironic storm of seeing the ascetically debauched secular saint serenade the most opulent saloon in the City of Sin may never be surpassed.

Mother of reinvention

Cohen’s valedictory world tour, which began in his Canadian homeland in May 2008 and has visited more than 150 cities, reportedly was inspired by necessity. After 15 years of near-total silence, Cohen came down from the mountain (quite literally: he was studying Zen in a monastery atop Mount Baldy in Southern California) to find that millions of dollars had vanished from his retirement fund. The case against his former personal manager is still being argued.

But after 15 years away from the stage, Cohen has been rewarded with the harvest of years. The concerts, including a date at Coachella, have been ecstatically received, and most of them sold out. Documented on the recent DVD and double CD “Leonard Cohen: Live in London,” the tour continues into 2010; Cohen wraps it up March 19 at the Kremlin Palace in Moscow.

Love and death

When he first appeared on the music scene in 1967, Cohen, then 33, was old as rock stars go. “The last time I was here, I was 60 years old,” Cohen said to his London audience. “Just a kid with a crazy dream.” Generations have listened to his songs of love and hate; their intimate orchestrations (often kept humble with the comic twanging of a Jew’s harp), made us feel deep in our youth. And those songs found deeper meanings as our sorrows and celebrations became those of adults. Cohen searched and suffered alongside us. “In that interim period, I took a lot of Prozac,” he said to the London crowd, “Paxil, Desyrel, Ritalin, Adderall, Wellbutrin, Focalin ... What did you guys take?”

The voice

Even Cohen himself has joked about his melancholy, sepulchral croak. “I was born like this, I had no choice/I was born with the gift of a golden voice,” he sings in “Tower of Song.” But as with his lyrics, the voice has only become more intimate and resonant, like the lowest string of a double bass.

“I’ve never thought of myself as a singer,” Cohen told Uncut Magazine. “I’ve been free from those considerations because so many people over the years told me I don’t have a voice. I kind of bought that.” But it’s the right instrument for his songs.

Songs of Leonard Cohen

“Suzanne.” “Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye.” “Bird on the Wire.” “Famous Blue Raincoat.” “Dance Me to the End of Love.” “Everybody Knows.” “Democracy.” “The Future.” “Anthem.” “Hallelujah”...

And his band

Cohen’s performances on this tour have been described as a mix of ceremony and orgy — some audiences kept him past the three-hour mark. He is accompanied by an excellent band, sporting, like Cohen, suits and waistcoats and rakish fedoras. The musicians include Javier Mas on 12-string bandurria and guitar, Bob Metzger (electric, acoustic & pedal steel guitar) Dino Soldo (sax, clarinet), Neil Larsen (keyboards and Hammond B3), Roscoe Beck (bass), Rafael Gayol (drums) and exquisite vocalists Sharon Robinson and the Webb sisters, Charley and Hattie.


Inducting Cohen into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008, Lou Reed described Cohen as belonging to the “highest and most influential echelon of songwriters.”

Cohen is deeply loved by musicians and audiences. And perhaps because there wasn’t any indication or hope that he would ever tour again, many tributes to Cohen have sprouted, including a Montreal Jazz Festival concert and the concert-turned-documentary film “I’m Your Man,” which features Rufus Wainwright, Nick Cave and U2. The album “Tower of Song” features Cohen’s canon sung by Sting, Tori Amos and Elton John; the more recent “I’m Your Fan” includes interpretations by R.E.M. and the Pixies. Cohen’s son, Adam Cohen, is also a singer-songwriter; he sings “Bird on the Wire” on the international tribute album “Acordes Con Leonard Cohen.”

The most idiosyncratic tribute may be the 30-member all-male a cappella choir called Conspiracy of Beards, which performs Cohen songs exclusively; like its inspiration, the group is deeply sincere, humble and humorous.

If You Go

* What: Leonard Cohen
* When: 8 p.m. Thursday
* Where: Colosseum at Caesars Palace
* Admission: $75-$275; 737-7110,

Re: The Las Vegas concert in the news

Posted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:11 am
by bridger15
Today's changing marquee with excerpt from Hallelujah, outside Caesar's

Re: CONCERT REPORT: Las Vegas, Nevada, November 12

Posted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:43 am
by bridger15
Here is a short vid of the Caesars Box Office area which is an example of the nerve deafening wall of noise 24/7 here and it is only mid-afternoon,

Re: The Las Vegas concert in the news

Posted: Fri Nov 13, 2009 8:52 pm
by Lilifyre
A friend sent me a link to this review. Thought I'd share it here. ... ard-cohen/

Wish I could have been there.